4364.0.55.002 - Australian Health Survey: Health Service Usage and Health Related Actions, 2011-12  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 26/03/2013  First Issue
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Contents >> Health actions of the general population >> Use of medical facilities


Medical facilities play a crucial role in maintaining a healthy society. People access medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics and emergency departments to detect and treat illness or injury.

In 2011-12, around 5.5 million people (24.9%) had attended a medical facility for their own health (admitted to hospital as an inpatient, visited an outpatient clinic, emergency/casualty department and/or day clinic) at least once in the last 12 months.

Around 11.8% of all people (2.6 million) had been admitted to hospital in the last 12 months (down from 14.8% in 2004-05). Outpatient clinics were visited by 7.9% of the population (1.7 million people) in the last 12 months, 12.0% visited an emergency department/casualty (2.7 million) and 6.1% visited a day clinic (1.4 million). Just over 75% of people had not attended a medical facility in the last 12 months.

In general, the use of medical facilities increased with age. People aged 75 years and over reported the highest use of medical facilities in 2011-12, with 40.0% attending at least one medical facility in the last 12 months and almost one-quarter (23.1%) being admitted to hospital (down from 27.9% in 2004-05). Women were more likely than men to have been admitted to hospital (12.9% compared with 10.6% respectively), particularly in the child-bearing related age groups between 15 and 44 years.

Graph Image for All persons - Proportion who attended a medical facility in last 12 months, 2011-12

In 2011-12, people aged 18 years and over who were overweight or obese used medical facilities more than people who were not (27.0% of overweight people and 29.4% of obese people, compared with 23.7% of people who were not).

Graph Image for All overweight or obese persons aged 18 years and over - Proportion who used a medical facility in last 12 months, 2011-12

For more information see Table 1: Selected health service usage and health actions taken, Table 3: Selected health service usage by selected population characteristics and Table 5: Selected health risk factors by health service usage and health actions taken.

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